Screen-ready friendly transcript for Episode 4 of The Triton Incident, a mystery audio drama.
With the veil of government secrecy finally pulled back, Sophia comes face to face with the answer she's chased for so long: did anyone survive the Triton incident?
Download the PDF below.
THE TRITON INCIDENT
EPISODE FOUR: REN
SFX: A door opens. A light is switched on. Conference room ambience, a small, quiet space.
REN: Come in. There aren’t any meetings booked until after lunch so I don’t think anyone will interrupt us.
SOPHIA: It’s lunchtime?
REN: Yeah, sorry. That was rude of me. You probably haven’t eaten. Are you hungry? I can grab something from the mess.
SOPHIA: Yeah, sure.
REN: I’ll be back in a sec.
SFX: A door closes.
MUSIC: Thoughtful synth notes.
SOPHIA: Ren has taken me to a conference room on the second floor. She’s different than I expected. She’s softer. But also, more… I don’t know, tired. Like someone at the end of a long, long race.
There’s writing on the whiteboard. It’s mostly numbers and equations but I can make out the words ‘portal aperture settings’ and I think ‘cymatic waveforms.’ There’s also a sketch of something. An artifact maybe? It kind of looks like a fidget spinner, ha.
SFX: A door opens, closes, Ren returning.
REN: They’re supposed to erase those after they’re done using them.
SOPHIA: Now I know all your secrets.
SFX: A tray is scooted over the table.
REN: Hope you like freeze-dried chili.
REN: Oh, I brought salt packets.
SFX: SALT PACKETS HITTING THE TABLE.
REN: We don’t get a lot of visitors.
SOPHIA: (While eating) Hm. I guess that’s the downside of living in a secret underwater base.
REN: This is a research facility. We do reef restoration, study hydrometeorology, we even run an underwater agricultural program.
SOPHIA: Mm. So all this is to study weather and grow lettuce?
REN: I never say that’s all we do.
SOPHIA: Have you been down here this whole time?
REN: Well, even with this new tech, you can only stay this deep for a few months or you get decomp sickness, so we rotate out.
SOPHIA: To where?
REN: Some travel. Most people go home.
SFX: Spoon rattling on a dish.
SOPHIA: Everyone thinks you’re dead.
REN: Obviously I don’t go home.
SOPHIA: (Thoughtful pause) I met your mom.
REN: (Deep steadying breath) How is she?
SOPHIA: Like a woman who lost her daughter.
REN: Mom’s tough.
SOPHIA: That’s how you justify lying to her?
REN: I wasn’t trying to justify anything. This wasn’t my idea.
SOPHIA: So who’s idea was it?
REN: It’s complicated. After the accident, I was presumed dead, so they decided—
SOPHIA: Who’s “they?”
REN: The people I work for.
SOPHIA: Fathoms Incorporated?
REN: Fathoms went under with the Triton. This is... someone different.
SOPHIA: Oh. That clears things right up.
REN: I’m not trying to be enigmatic, but there are things I’m not allowed to talk about.
SOPHIA: (Out of patience) So what can you talk about?
REN: (Rising to meet her) What do you want to know?
SOPHIA: Did anyone else make it off the Triton?
REN: (A long pause) No.
SOPHIA: Are you sure?
SOPHIA: They lied to everyone else. Maybe they lied to you as well.
REN: I saw their bodies. Nobody else made it. I’m sorry.
SFX: Silence. SOPHIA pushes away her tray.
REN: You want any more?
SOPHIA: No. Thanks.
REN: If I could have saved your dad, I would’ve. I would’ve given anything to—
SOPHIA: (Changing the subject) So what did you find down here?
MUSIC: Delicate synth notes, hopeful, anticipating.
REN: Probably easier if I show you.
MUSIC: Music fades over the tradition.
SFX: Echoing ambience, like an indoor pool.
SOPHIA: I’m in what looks like a giant aquarium. There are computers all along the wall. They’re monitoring something. I can see like EKG waves. And—
SFX: The high-pitched, whale-like call of Emi: Emi is an oceanic creature, something not quite of this world.
SOPHIA: Oh my God.
REN: Hey, girl. (To SOPHIA) Sophia, meet Emi.
SOPHIA: (Awed) What is she?
REN: (Joyfully) We don’t know! She bears evolutionary similarities to knifefish, but her physiology is different. She’s also much more intelligent. Watch. Emi, up!
SFX: Emi chirrups happily. Water splashes.
SOPHIA: Emi looks like a cross between an eel and a stingray. She has this bioluminescent glow. I’m surprised how much personality she has. I could watch her glide through the water all day. It’s effortless. And joyful, like a bird riding an updraft.
SFX: Emi splashes SOPHIA.
SOPHIA: Oh! (delighted laugh as she gets splashed)
REN: Sorry, I’ll get you a towel.
SOPHIA: It’s okay!
REN: Bad girl! Ugh. We found her in a kind of stasis chamber. We still don’t know who built it, but it was millions of years old.
SOPHIA: A stasis chamber?
REN: The builders — whoever, whatever they are — their technology is significantly more advanced than ours.
SOPHIA: (Excited) Are we talking about aliens?
REN: We think they were native to this planet.
SOPHIA: So, what? Merpeople?
REN: The truth is, we don’t know. We’ve been studying her for years, but Emi’s true nature is still a mystery. The Doc thought she was some sort of pet, or an object of worship. I think she was a vehicle. Like a horse.
SOPHIA: This is...not what I was expecting.
REN: Tell me about it! I had quit diving when we found Emi. The Doc was like, “just one more dive, Ren”. Then we found that chamber...
SOPHIA: Wait, Dad knew about all this?
REN: He was there when we found her. He helped design her tank; he calculated the proper salinity levels. He was a smart guy. Like his daughter.
SOPHIA: Oh. (Self-conscious) Ha.
REN: You found me. You found this place. No one else has.
SOPHIA: Well. There’s something to be said for motivation.
REN: (Long pause) You know...your dad was really excited to meet you.
SOPHIA: I know. Um. I...I got your message. I assume that was you.
REN: Yeah. Felt like the least I could do. (Deep breath) We talked a lot, your dad and I. He told me once that he felt like he messed up when your brother was born. He never knew what to do. He’d get angry when your brother would cry. He sucked at changing diapers. He couldn’t soothe him. He’d make jokes about it, but I could tell it really bothered him. He was determined to do better with you. You know what he was reading? From Dude to Dad.
REN: (Laughing) Seriously. I caught him in the mess one night and he tried to hide it like it was porn. Although he never hid his porn.
REN: Sorry. TMI. I guess what I’m trying to say is that he wanted to be there.
SOPHIA: Yeah, but he wasn’t.
REN: That’s because the doc and I begged him to stay on. He didn’t want to. We couldn’t run that ship without him. Seriously, that’s not an exaggeration. He made the Triton go. We convinced him to do another tour. If it weren’t for me, your dad would still be here. So if you’re going to hate anyone, hate me.
SOPHIA: ...I don’t hate you.
REN: (Deep sigh) That was the worst day of my life. I wish...
SFX: Emi singing, an eerie, yet beautiful sound, like a shimmer in the air.
SOPHIA: What is that?
REN: Emi’s singing. She does it to soothe me. Thanks, girl.
SOPHIA: That’s amazing. She’s amazing.
REN: Her species communicate via dense cymatic waves. We were tracking one when we were hit by a rogue wave.
SOPHIA: Her species? You mean there’s more of her?
REN: We assume. Any ecosystem requires biodiversity. But until we can get the portal open, we can’t—
SOPHIA: The portal?!
REN: That’s a whole other story. First, I gotta know, how did you end up on a narco sub?
SOPHIA: A friend hooked me up with J-P. He was actually a nice guy — you know, for a drug runner I feel like I owe him an apology.
REN: It’s amazing that you’re alive. If you hadn’t ran aground where you did—
SOPHIA: We didn’t run aground. We were attacked.
SOPHIA: A creature came at us. I presume it’s the same race as Emi.
REN: Emi’s not aggressive.
SOPHIA: Well this thing sure was. It rammed us.
REN: Maybe it was a shark. There’s this species of whitetip shark that sometimes mistake our AUVs for—
SOPHIA: No no no, it wasn’t a shark. It was way too big. It was huge. It, it made the same sound as that thing in Resolute trench.
REN: The...Resolute trench?
SOPHIA: Yeah, I spoke with Greg. He ran the charter that took you out.
REN: You’re sure it was the same sound?
REN: (curses in Japanese)
MUSIC: Energetic guitar plucks, circling, synths rising up.
REN: Come with me.
SOPHIA: Why? What’s—
REN: Come on!
MUSIC: Music fades.
SFX: They enter a busy hallway, ambient conversation and footsteps.
LIEUTENANT DOYLE: Ma’am?
REN: I need you to escort this young woman to—
SFX: A LOUD CRASH. People screaming in confusion and dismay. Something hit the base!
SOPHIA: What just happened?
SFX: Alarm klaxons. Metal groaning, pressurized. People screaming.
LIEUTENANT DOYLE: Stay here, ma’am.
SFX: The mysterious sound again, the one that has been haunting SOPHIA!
SFX: ANOTHER CRASH. Water rushes in. Screams. WE HEAR AUTOMATIC WEAPONS FIRE.
LIEUTENANT DOYLE: (yells)
SFX: A gruesome squish
SFX: People running, the mysterious sound roaring.
SOPHIA: (breathing heavily) What the hell is that thing?
REN: Keep going!
SOPHIA: But the Lieutenant!
SFX: They leave the carnage behind.
REN: In here.
REN: They’re called Deepdwellers. They inhabit this area. We think maybe they’re drawn to the portal. We don’t know. Get in.
SFX: A door whirrs mechanically.
SOPHIA: What are you—
REN: This is an evac pod. It’s automated. It will take you to the surface and sound a distress beacon.
SOPHIA: No, but—
REN: Get in.
SOPHIA: What about you?
REN: I’m staying.
SOPHIA: I can’t leave you here!
REN: I couldn’t save your dad. I’m saving you.
SOPHIA: No! But—
SFX: The carnage approaches.
REN: Time to go.
SOPHIA: No! Wait!
SFX: The door closes tight.
SOPHIA: Ren! REN!
SFX: The rumble of something huge and mechanical activating, being launched away into the sea. Everything fades to silence.
MUSIC: Ominous ringing ambience.
SOPHIA: That was three months ago. I still don’t know what happened to Ren. There’s been nothing on the news.
I understand why she did what she did. But… I just hope she’s okay. I tried to get back down there, but strangely, no drug runners volunteered to follow in J-P’s footsteps.
It’s weird being back here. Doing normal things. Going to meetings. Seeing movies. When just under the surface...
Maybe Lovecraft was right. Maybe we should have left the depths unplumbed. I watched a person, a good man, die in front of me. Maybe Ren’s dead. The crew of the Triton. Dad. But there are amazing things down there as well. Ancient civilizations capable of astonishing feats. New life.
MUSIC: Determined, clear notes, like the ringing of a bell. Pulsing pushes through, driving towards an uncertain future.
SOPHIA: I’ll find my way back. Someday. Despite everything that happened, despite what I’ve seen, I don’t fear the deep. Guess I’m more like my dad than I thought.
NARRATOR: The Triton Incident is produced by Archiact Interactive, and is a tie-in for the virtual reality game FREEDIVER: Triton Down. This episode was written by Peter Boychuk. Sound design and mixing by Sondra Moyls. Starring Tara Pratt as Sophia and Mayumi Yoshida as Ren. Also featuring the voice talent of Alex Eastman.
All music in this episode was composed By Lee Rosevere.
FREEDIVER: Triton Down is available on the Oculus Quest, Playstation VR, the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift.
© Archiact Interactive, 2020